November 3, 2014

Bob Schieffer has a twisted sense of what is offensive and what is not. On Sunday's Face the Nation, Schieffer launched into a diatribe about offensive Democratic ads. This is a narrative he must have lifted from Politico, who were concern-trolling all over the Internet about those terrible Democrats and their terrible ads encouraging minority voters to get out and vote.

Here's one of the mailers Politico and Schieffer are bent about:


The back of the mailer says this:

One previously unreported Louisiana mailer shows a young black man with his hands up. “Ferguson has taught us that when African-Americans do not vote, local police departments are not accountable to our community,” it says. “Rights are abused. Justice is denied.” A mailing in Georgia features a similar message but features a picture of African-American toddlers. And one in Arkansas says, “Republicans are targeting our kids, silencing our voices and even trying to impeach our president.”

There's nothing wrong with the message on that mailer. I would argue that it is a shining example of how to elevate the voices of those who feel as though they have no voice. It is also factually true in all respects.

But Schieffer thinks it's one of the most offensive ads of the cycle:

But you know one of the undercurrents in this election, and I think one of the ugliest parts of it, there are some Democratic ads running out there suggesting that if African Americans don't vote for the Democrat, that they're going to get shot like that poor kid in Missouri.

Of course, that's not at all what was said. Not in the least. I repeat: Everything on that mailer is factually true. Republicans are trying to suppress the vote, they are trying to impeach the first African-American president, and when communities of color do not vote, they cede the leadership of those communities to white people, which is what happened in Ferguson.

Politico didn't stop with this mailer, either. Here's more of their fauxtrage:

The effort has employed other media, too. A radio ad in North Carolina tries to link Republican Senate candidate Thom Tillis with the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Florida. Flyers placed on cars outside black churches feature a photo of what appears to be a lynch mob and say “Obama’s impeachment will begin” if Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) loses.

This is also true. There can be no question about it. Here's Senator James Inhofe, saying, "Benghazi would endure and impeachment could come after the 2014 elections."

Seems pretty clear to me. Republicans take the Senate; impeachment is put on the table. It's offensive, but not in the way Schieffer is offended.

Here's more ads causing Politico and Schieffer's heartburn:

A narrator says in the first, “McConnell has been leading the Republican effort to take away our voting rights. Just like he blocked everything from getting done in Washington, he’s blocking the ballot box and trying to silence our voices.”

State Sen. Georgia Powers, an African-American woman, says in the second radio ad, “Mitch McConnell and the Republicans are trying to take away our right to vote. That’s why our community and faith leaders are rallying behind Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes.”

Another mailer in North Carolina shows a picture of an African-American man on his knees with his hands up as two armed, white cops approach. “This won’t ever end. Until we vote,” it says.

“On the streets of Ferguson, in a Wal-Mart in Ohio, and in too many other places across the country there is a painful lesson to be learned,” it says on the flip side. “When we don’t vote, local police departments aren’t accountable to the community.”

Bob Schieffer might want to turn his head the other way and pretend these aren't true statements, but each and every one of them is, in fact, true. Anyone who knows they're true understands why people were in the streets of Ferguson protesting and why Color of Change, Democrats and other organizations are fighting to lift up African-American voices via the voting process.

Because as they say, when they don't vote, there's no accountability to the community. This is as American as apple pie, so what exactly is the problem here?


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